Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Saturday, May 16, 2009
I was stunned when I read that over 7,000 people have been killed in a little over 2 years in Mexico. This is as a result of the Mexican government's decision to take a principled stand against the drug trafficking and the killing and corruption that go along with it.
With a population over 100 million people, there are nearly 50,000 troops and police engaged in this battle. Mexico is trying to break free from a culture of corruption and greed that has affected all of Mexico. There is some worry that this war may spill over into the USA border states.We have a friend in Culiacan, Mexico. In 2008, that area alone saw over 800 people killed.
The mayor of Ciudad Juarez, Jose Reyes Ferriz, said he “knew that some families had left to live in El Paso out of fear of the city’s violence,” but said that he had no figures.
Ciudad Juarez is the battleground in the power struggle between the Sinaloa and the Juarez drug cartels.
In escalating violence, the city of some 1.5 million has registered some 800 homicides so far this year.
That would be the equivalent of approximately 1000 killed in Greater Vancouver (GV)!! Can you imagine if 2-3 people per day were being murdered in GV? It's just mind-boggling.
When I read stories like this I usually have a couple of reactions. 1. Sad that many innocent people are killed in the crossfire of drug and gang wars. 2. Admiration and prayer for the government that will do what it takes to make their city safe. After all, that is a primary job of government. We have our own issues in Vancouver area with the UN gang and the Bacon brothers of Abbotsford, but nothing like this. We have much to be thankful for in Canada. Even being able to vote this past week without fear or intimidation - we are blessed. Besides it being our near neighbour, we also know missionaries there and have friends there. Please, let's keep Mexico in our prayers.
The LA Times has a full feature on it here.
Monday, May 11, 2009
We have the wonderful privilege and responsibility of being informed and then voting accordingly. Pray for our leaders. Pray for the election. Be thankful we have the freedom to vote - it's been paid for by our forefathers. Let's show our appreciation and gratitude by participating.
In my opinion, apathy or passivity is not acceptable in this area.
The polls are open from 8 - 8 in every riding.
Friday, May 8, 2009
We had Benny Perez yesterday morning. Benny is a Mexican American pastor with passion, depth, anointing and joy. On top of that, he's pretty funny!
Benny challenged us and reminded us of how important it is to rely on the strength of God. He shared his own challenges of even the past week - a friend who also attends their church, Las Vegas entertainer Danny Gans, died on Friday. Another pastor friend in LV fell morally.
Using the story of the man with the withered hand in Luke 6:6 and following, Benny mentioned that in the midst of our struggles of why? what? how come? etc. God wants us to reach out to Him.
Here's a few things that Benny said:
1. We all struggle in various ways. Jesus is not intimidated by our struggles. We all have them. Jesus embraces us in the midst of our struggles.
2. In His grace, Jesus reaches out to us, calls to us and doesn't sit by waiting for us to reach out to Him.
3. Religion is when we forget about hurting people and spend more time debating how and why we do things the way we do.
4. Apart from God, I can do nothing. With God, I can do whatever He calls me to do. (Moses, Jeremiah, Gideon)
5. God starts with people that struggle. He has the incredible power to turn our tests into testimonies and our mess into messages for Him.
Be encouraged. Jesus is calling out to us in the midst of our struggle. Stretch out your struggle to Him. Let Him do what only He can do.
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Our conference that we're attending is great. There are world class speakers, we are here with some of our church family, and the times of worship are awesome.
The speaker on the opening night was Rachel Hickson from England. She spoke on how we respond in these times of shaking. It is times like these that we need to 'take courage'.
We need to take courage in God and in His ability and power now more than ever. We need to act with belief and faith in the promises of God.
Very often our thinking processes and emotional reactions are contrary to the promises of God. Which will we follow? God or our emotions? Matthew 14:27 and Acts 4:13 notes that in the midst of pain, suffering and shaking for the disciples, it was noted that they were responding in an amazing way because they 'had been with Jesus" This tells us how important our relationship is with Jesus if we are to be effective and moving forward. 'Take Courage"!
What is shaking in your life? What is out of order and causing anxiety, fear and unbelief? Finances? Lack? Relational problems? Fear? I know that I need to take Courage in God and in Jesus - now more than ever!
Monday, May 4, 2009
We got a call the other night from Shanda's sister who informed us that her 3 year old son, Eli, wanted to talk to Shanda about him wanting to drive a ferry boat when he's big. He'd then drive it to see Aunty Shanda.
The conversation wound down so Shanda asked him if he wanted to talk to Uncle Craig. Not really he said, because he wanted to talk to our dog, Bentley. Eli was informed that Bentley was unable to come to the phone - I think he was sleeping. So Shanda asked Eli again if he'd like to talk to Uncle Craig. Eli said 'no, but can you ask Uncle Craig to wake up Bentley so he can talk on the phone?'!!
Nothing like a 3 year old to give you an idea of your place in the world!
Saturday, May 2, 2009
I know that dogs are eaten by humans in Korea, but this is pretty extreme to keep the supply up... Not only cloning dogs, but cloning them to glow red?
SEOUL, South Korea — South Korean scientists say they have engineered four beagles that glow red using cloning techniques that could help develop cures for human diseases.
The four dogs, all named "Ruppy" — a combination of the words "ruby" and "puppy" — look like typical beagles by daylight.
But they glow red under ultraviolet light, and the dogs' nails and abdomens, which have thin skins, look red even to the naked eye.
The rest of the craziness here..